The Victoria Generals of the Texas Collegiate League have announced the addition of outfielder Billy Richard and catcher M.P. Cokinos from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio to their opening day roster.
St. Mary’s University is 44-8 on the season and currently ranked #2 in the nation in the latest NCAA Division II baseball poll. The Rattlers won the Heartland Conference regular season crown as well as the conference tournament and are headed to Missouri for the South Central Regional which begins play this weekend.
A big part of St. Mary’s success this season can be attributed to Richard and Cokinos, both of which were recently named First-Team All-Heartland Conference.
“I had the chance to see both of these guys play first-hand this year,” commented Blake Koch, Victoria’s general manager. “I was very impressed with the way they played the game. They are leaders on the field and will be huge assets for our team this summer.”
Billy Richard, a junior outfielder from Schertz, Texas, just missed out on being named the Player of the Year in the Heartland Conference this season. Richard is currently hitting .366 on the year with 16 doubles, one triple, eight home runs, 32 RBIs, and 59 runs scored. Richard has also walked 31 times and stolen 11 bases. The Rattlers leadoff hitter was named Hitter of the Week a league-high three times during the season. Richard led the conference in hits and runs scored. He was also second in the league in batting average, slugging percentage, on base percentage, total bases, and home runs.
“Billy is having a break-out year for St. Mary’s this season,” stated Koch. “We hope he can keep his hot streak going all the way through the summer in a Generals uniform.”
M.P. Cokinos, a junior catcher from Houston, is having a big season in his own right, leading the conference in RBIs while also earning a Golden Glove award as the league’s best defensive catcher. Heading into the regional, Cokinos is currently hitting .321 with 13 doubles, one triple, six home runs, 49 RBIs, 28 walks, and 33 runs scored. Cokinos was also named Hitter of the Week for the first week of the season.
Cokinos transferred to St. Mary’s after spending two years at the University of Houston. As a freshman, Cokinos hit .284 with eight doubles, one triple, seven home runs, 42 RBIs, and 28 runs scored. For his efforts, he was named to the 2012 Conference USA All-Freshman Team as well as the 2012 Houston College Classic All-Tournament Team.
As a sophomore, Cokinos hit .267 with 13 doubles, three triples, three home runs, 37 RBIs, and 18 runs scored. He was also named to the 2011 Silver Glove Series All-Tournament Team.
“M.P. is one of the best all-around catchers I have seen in a long time,” claimed Koch. “In my eyes, he definitely has a future in professional baseball behind the plate.”
The Generals home opener is on Sunday, June 3 at 7:05pm at Riverside Stadium against the Acadiana Cane Cutters. Season tickets for all 30 of the Generals home games this season are on sale now. Fans can buy season tickets and team merchandise at the Generals team store located at 3708 North Navarro, Suite A in the Landmark Shopping Center, online at www.VictoriaGenerals.com, or by calling 361-485-9522.
The Generals are still looking for a few more host families for the summer. If you are interested in hosting a player, please contact the Generals front office.